Perhaps best remembered as the writer and composer of the ever-popular Guys and Dolls and the Pulitzer Prize-winning How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Frank Loesser was one of the great songwriters of the twentieth century. Lyricist of over 700 songs--among them such cherished favorites as "Baby, It’s Cold Outside,” "Once in Love with Amy,” and "I Believe in You”--his work has received both Tony and Academy Awards. Here Thomas L. Riis, in a deeply informed and lively discussion of Loesser’s life and musical career, presents a critical look at one of the most important--though often overshadowed--Broadway composers.
Immensely prolific and a personally magnetic man, Loesser was a major figure during the Broadway golden age that included Rodgers and Hammerstein, Lerner and Loewe, and Bernstein. Riis traces Loesser’s early career as a Hollywood songwriter and a noted contributor to the war effort. He discusses in depth each of Loesser’s musicals and provides a look at the legacy of a man admired as a mentor who inspired dozens of assistants, protégés, young songwriters, novice singer-actors, and aspiring producers. This book offers a concise look at Loesser’s life along with an engaging examination of the totality of his works.
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After a biographical introduction to the composer/lyricist of Guys and Dolls, The Most Happy Fella, and How To Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Riis (Joseph Negler Professor of Music, Univ ... Read full review